When caring for seniors, there is always the challenge of providing them enough care while still giving them the freedom they want. And the situation can be hard for both the caregiver and the patient. Because of that, providers of home health care in California offer some handy advice on balancing between enabling and caregiving.
Understanding Why Seniors Want To Stay Independent
As they age, seniors can become more worried about how their lives will change. Their bodies get weaker and they have a hard time doing different things. With that, they can have a growing fear of losing their independence.
That is more so when you assign a caregiver to your older loved one. To them, it might be a sign that you think they truly can’t act on their own. As such, they will often try to reassert that independence. Understanding their reasons for doing so will help you better establish a strategy to balance this with their caregiving needs.
The Need To Feel Like An Individual
Depending on their lifestyle when they were young, your elderly loved ones will often have a strong sense of self. And when they need to have their lives managed by others, they lose the feeling of being an individual. That can lead to depression or anger at their situation.
Maintaining A Sense Of Purpose
Another issue brought about by a senior loved one losing their independence is a loss of their sense of purpose. They might start feeling useless. That sense of hopelessness can lead to isolation. It can also lead to depression.
Bringing back their independence will also help them find a new sense of purpose. It allows seniors to look at aging from a different perspective. That has a significant effect on their overall well-being.
Aids With Improving Memory
One of the worries for the family of a senior citizen is that their failing memories can hamper their ability to do things. And if left on their own, it can lead to problems. But as it turns out, giving your older loved ones some form of independence can help mitigate that problem.
Letting seniors do the activities they want encourages them to exercise their brains. For instance, they get to jog their memories when planning their schedules. All of these can help delay the progress of Alzheimer’s and dementia.
The Challenge Of Creating An Enabling Environment For Seniors
Of course, the worries of families about letting their older loved ones go about by themselves are valid. They might become too confident and overestimate their abilities. That can lead to various untoward incidents.
On the other hand, some seniors might not take well to a very enabling environment. They may prefer to retire completely from life. And they want everything handled for them. Even if they have the freedom to move as they wish, they will refuse to do so and expect their relatives to do everything for them. That creates friction between them and their caregivers.
When creating an enabling environment for your older loved ones, you often have to deal with these two extremes. You need to ensure that your ward receives enough care for their condition. At the same time, you need an environment that encourages them to move on their own as much as possible.
How You Can Be More Enabling To A Senior
With all the above challenges, you need to plan out how to do the care regimen for your elderly loved ones. The first thing you need to do here is to set clear boundaries for your ward. The work is two-fold. You should set up caregiving boundaries while stating the limitation of your ward’s independence.
Setting Up Caregiving Boundaries
In the first part, your goal is to provide your older loved ones with enough care but without them becoming too dependent on you. The first thing you need is an understanding of your loved one’s exact condition. Each condition has a unique set of symptoms and progression. Coordinate with their doctor to better identify these symptoms and determine the limits you want to set.
A particular consideration here is their state of mind. Even if they don’t have dementia or Alzheimer’s, be aware of their emotional state. This can change significantly and influence the care they would demand from you.
Saying No To Your Ward
With the above, be ready to say no to your ward. That can be a bit challenging, especially since this is family you are dealing with. But there are things that you can do to make this easier.
Start by listing down the requests that you prefer to decline. Think about the requests your loved one has made and the ones you think they will make. Give a clear reason why you would want to decline these. When the situation comes up, provide your explanation. But you should also be ready to guide them on dealing with the situation.
Setting Up Boundaries On Independence
In the next part, you have to work on helping your older loved one be independent within reasonable limits. Here, you have to go back and review their capabilities. Also, to determine how far they can reasonably go beyond these capabilities.
For instance, your loved one might be able to perform some household tasks unaided. However, should they decide to do others, they might require some assistance. In such cases, you should give them the chance to gauge their abilities first. That gives them a greater sense of control, encouraging them to act more responsibly.
However, there will be moments when they will insist on tackling something out of their league. For that, you should be ready to back them up. Be alert to avoid them causing harm to themselves. You should give a stern but calm explanation afterward about why they are not allowed to do these activities.
Getting Help From The Best Provider Of Home Health Care In California
Of course, trying to strike that balance on your own is not easy. For that, you need some additional help. At Amavi, we provide extensive senior caregiver support. But we also understand this need.
Our team of professionals knows well how to handle the situation. Thus, you can be sure that your loved ones will enjoy their independence and get the most out of their daily routine. Contact us today to get the best health care in California for them.